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Run Off Fun
  |  First Published: March 2015



The rain of January and February has produced some amazing barra fishing and March is building to be red hot for those with barra fever.

The local freshwater barra hot spots in the area have produced quality fish, while the brackish area continue to be standout locations to target. The rain has flushed out the prawns and seen a real increase in their abundance, and the king salmon have keyed in on their abundance and are on fire for anglers keen for a salmon hit.

Fitzroy and the Narrows

King salmon have been active, especially on the mudflats where the prawns are at their thickest and most active, while barra are equally in numbers and willing to eat. This pattern should continue over the next few months with the river poised to fish well for most species. The mouth of the Fitzroy has been fishing well despite all the rain and is expected to continue to do so through March. Port Alma has been consistent with anglers fishing the channels and creeks picking up a variety of species including grunter, salmon and barra.

Rivers, Creeks and the Beaches

The local creeks leading into the river are still trickling with fresh water runoff, and finding the areas where this inflow meets the saltwater is making for some brilliant fishing. A variety of species can be found in these areas but the most predominant fish is barramundi. Flicking around smaller 5-7cm hardbody lures and fishing live baits are proving the most effective way to catch fish. Many of the fish are smaller barra push up into the fresh to eat and grow big on the plentiful supply of baitfish, but there’s also plenty of bigger fish mixed in amongst them so it pays to be prepared and ready for a big fish to hit your lure. Barra aren’t the only fish on the menu with saltwater species such as bream and flathead concentrated to the creeks that have the least amount of freshwater, and the most amount of saltwater.

Freshwater lagoons

The freshwater lagoons are fishing very well from the recent rain, with bait plentiful and fish actively in pursuit. The Ropes Road crossing is a productive place to throw a lure, with the water flowing through the crossing’s culverts funnelling bait and current through the area. Barra have been positioning themselves in the snags stacked up against the crossing waiting for food to come by, and it’s here that you want to concentrate your efforts. The crossing holds plenty of barra that have moved up from the salt, and many of these will get trapped here and in lagoons when the water recedes. Along with barra there are plenty of tarpon on offer, and they’re great fun to catch on surface lures due to their aerobatic nature. They’re also generally easy to find and catch making them a great species for those keen for a bit of surface action.

On a recent lure fishing trip with the CQ Fishing and Boating Facebook team, we matched the hatch perfectly in our lure selection using Atomic Hardz Bream Shad and Deep Crank twitched and rolled along the snag line to catch plenty of fish. The trip illustrated perfectly the importance in choosing the correct sized lure and colour to maximise success.

Crabbing

The crabbing is predicted to fire up once the flow of water has stopped and is expected to stay that way for the coming months. The crabs should be full to the brim with meat as the recent rain and run off brought with it lots of nutrients and food. A pack of mullet heads is hard to go past as crab bait, and is a well-known bait that is inexpensive and plentiful in supply.

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